THE PERSON: SUBJECT AND COMMUNITY

Karol Wojtyła

Karol Wojtyła

Karol Wojtyła (1920-), an Ethical Personalist who experienced nazism and communism. Hence he has the highest respect for the dignity of a human person.

In October 1953 Fr. Karol Wojtyła began to lecture on Social Ethics at the Jagiellonian University, Cracow. His habilitation thesis, An Evaluation of the Possibility of Constructing a Christian Ethics on the Basis of the System of Max Scheler, as his second doctorate was awarded by the Jagiellonian University Faculty of Theology in January 1954. In his habilitatio Wojtyła presents Scheler’s Ethical Personalism.

What does it mean to be a person? Wojtyła’s definition of a person can be found in his article Person: subject and community.

“When Schema 13 was being studied (later to become the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the modern world, Gaudium et spes), and I spoke on personalism, Father de Lubac came to me and said, encouragingly: Yes, yes, yes, that’s the way forward, and this meant a great deal to me, as I was still relatively young.” (John Paul II, Rise, Let us be on Our Way)

This essay will examine the connection between the subjectivity of man as a person and the structure of the human community. That relationship was tentatively explored in The Acting Person,1 especially in the chapter entitled “Participation”. The present study is an attempt to develop insights initially introduced there.

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